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Director's Welcome

It is my great pleasure to welcome you to the Syracuse University Humanities Center, whose home is in the College of Arts and Sciences. A hub of vibrant scholarship and dynamic programming, the Center’s initiatives emphasize the deep relevance of the humanities and focus on the humanities as a public good.

Through our faculty and graduate student fellowships, distinguished visiting professorships, and diverse programming, including Syracuse Symposium, a public events series focused around an annual theme, the Center cultivates research, supports interdisciplinary collaboration, and fosters public engagement with the humanities, broadly conceived. Our work highlights how the humanities are indispensable for examining enduring questions, confronting pressing social issues, and addressing ongoing inequities.

I invite you to stop by and visit us, at the heart of campus, in the historic Tolley building: our beautiful space offers a welcoming environment for contemplation and vibrant intellectual exchange.


Vivian M. May, Ph.D.
Director, Humanities Center | Principal Investigator, CNY Humanities Corridor

Vivian May seated in Sainsbury LibraryDirector of the Syracuse University Humanities Center, Principal Investigator of the CNY Humanities Corridor, and Professor of Women’s and Gender Studies, Vivian M. May has published widely on Black feminist intellectual histories, intersectionality, and feminist theory and literature. In addition to numerous articles and chapters, she is author of two books: the first, Anna Julia Cooper, Visionary Black Feminist (Routledge, 2007), shows how Cooper deserves a much wider audience for her innovative and often daring contributions to a Black feminist public sphere. Her most recent book, Pursuing Intersectionality, Unsettling Dominant Imaginaries (Routledge, 2015), demonstrates how often intersectionality is resisted, misunderstood, and misapplied and pushes for more meaningful engagement with intersectionality’s radical ideas, histories, and justice orientations. She also served as President of the National Women’s Studies Association (2014-2016).